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To ensure that the five themes of the Just Practice Framework are consistently applied when working with service users: Meaning, Context, Power, History and Possibility
Introduction (half a page)
• What is the topic?
• What is the connection to social work?
• What does your paper do?
Identity and Issues (1 page)
• Think of a person that you are working with and identify where you are in the process (i.e. engagement, assessment/planning/review). Identify the issues being addressed in the situation presented by the person
Meaning (2 pages)
• How are you working with the service user in order to find out what their understanding of the situation is? How are you ascertaining the MEANING they give to the experiences and conditions that shape their lives, as well as their wishes and feelings?
Contexts (2 pages)
• CONTEXT is the background and set of circumstances and conditions that surround and influence particular events and situations in the lives of all of us. Context allows us to look beyond the obvious and see things that might otherwise be missed. Within social work, the interwoven contexts are often interpersonal, sociopolitical, and community-based. How are you taking into consideration the contexts in which the client’s experiences and conditions unfold? What are those contexts? How are contexts adding to the meaning given by the person to their lived experience and conditions? How are contexts impacting your understanding of the situation? Similarities in Positionality (1 page)
• Consider how your approach is/may be affected by any similarities between you and the person (e.g., in age, gender, ability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class status, and/or education).
Differences in Positionality (1 page)
• Consider how your approach is/may be affected because of any of your social identities that are not the same as those of the service user (e.g., in age, gender, ability, ethnicity, sexual orientation, class status, and/or education).
Power & History (2 pages)
• As an individual in a “professional position,” the social worker has to be aware of how their role might connote POWER to the service user. According to Finn (2016), there are different forms of power. Power over, power within, power with, and power to act. • Where is the service user experiencing someone having power over them and their life? Where in their life is the service user exercising power over people in their life?
• Where is this happening in their personal life as in people close to them having power over them? Where is the service user exercising power to act with people close to them? • Where is it happening in their external environment, as in a child welfare system having power over them? Or do the police and or justice system have power over them? Are the service recipients having issues with the school system? Where is the service user exercising power within relationships that are a part of their external environment?
• How much weight/consideration are you giving to this person’s story about the experiences and conditions of their life as well as their wishes and feelings? • How has HISTORY marked the person or their group or community for oppression? How has history shaped their resilience? What might their history tell us about POSSIBILITY for the service user? For example, the service user has had to deal with adversity since they were 12 years old due to sexual orientation and gender non-conformity or the service user has an immigration story.
Power & Possibility (1 page)
• What other avenues are there for the service user’s meaning, wishes, and feelings to be presented—including them doing so for themselves? Are you sure that you have adequately explored their meaning, wishes, and feelings?
Conclusion (half a page)
• What is the biggest takeaway from this essay?
• How will this information make you a better social worker?
Please Note: Your paper should total between 10-12 pages (not including the cover or reference pages) and use standard APA formatting.
Note: Below is the subject
John I. Identifying Information
John F. Cole is an 18-year-old African American male. John is 5’10 and about 150 lbs. John has a slender build and has a tattoo of his mother’s name on the inside of his wrist in her memory. His manner is calm and playful, though occasionally forlorn. John likes to express himself through wearing colorful and patterned socks. John identifies as heterosexual. This bio-psychosocial is part of supportive documentation for John’s housing applications. II. Past History and Presenting Issues
John was born to Lisa Moore and John Cole Sr. on 02/19/02 in Long Island, NY. John reports that he was initially raised on Long Island and moved around while growing up due to Mr. Cole’s job instability. Additionally, Mr. Cole was in and out of jail. John’s mother died when he was 3-years-old from a brain aneurysm. To this day, John feels a great deal of sadness in regards to the loss of his mother. Ms. Moore was born on 12/23, and John has reported having a difficult time emotionally around Christmastime as a result. Mr. Cole is currently incarcerated for robbery in the second degree. Mr. Cole’s earliest release date is January 2023. John has three adult half-siblings, who are all in their late 20s and 30s; Shatasia, Vernon, and Jerard. John has a younger sister, Shaniya, who is 17 and in care as well.
John reported a history of physical abuse by Mr. Cole. John allegedly run away from home many times to avoid being around his father. John has a history of hospitalizations and was prescribed Seroquel in 2017, which he feels he did not need but attributes to his father trying to control him. While John has engaged in multiple phone calls with his father since arriving to Kaplan House, he has stated that he does not want to visit him. John has also expressed that Mr. Cole is “lucky” that John is speaking to him. During phone conversations with John, Mr. Cole has reported that he’s proud of John and encourages John to stay on a positive path to prevent him from facing a similar experience to his. John presents as generally detached during the conversations. Prior to being in care with JBFCS, John resided in residential placements St. Christopher’s and Martin De Porres. John began residing at Martin De Porres at age 13 or 14; however it is unclear when John was at St. Christopher’s. John moved in with his adult half-siblings in 2015 in Queens, NY. He was then placed at Geller House on 08/30/18 by ACS, on the basis of a voluntary petition. According to ACS records, John was brought to Queens Hospital Center following a verbal altercation with one of his adult siblings. When John was ready to be discharged after three days, Shatasia refused to pick him up, stating she was fearful of him and his behavior. As John did not want to reside with his adult siblings any longer and was willing to enter foster care, he was placed at Geller House. Geller House recommended that John be placed in a group home setting. John was transferred to Kaplan House on 12/24/18.
John had a step-father who died in 2018. As per ACS history, John and his step-father experienced a falling out at one point, but were able to move past it. John attended a ceremony for his step-father at the family’s church in November 2018 with Shatasia.
III. Family Involvement
John reports that he speaks most often to his adult sister Shatasia through phone or during home visits. Ms. Moore’s home was approved for overnight visits in January 2020 and since then, John has engaged in several home visits and both parties have reported that all visits have gone well. John reports being in contact with his other adult siblings through phone as well. Shaniya is currently placed at Mercy First YRC. Kaplan House has attempted to schedule multiple sibling visits for John and Shaniya, however according to her case planners has declined all visits. John reports being in contact with Shaniya intermittently, as she does not consistently respond to his outreach through social media. Mr. Cole engages in monthly phone calls with Kaplan House to receive updates of John’s progress and wellbeing. Since arriving to Kaplan House John has declined phone calls or visits to his father, however accepts written letters from Mr. Cole. Mr. Cole is highly interested in re-building his relationship with John, however is understanding of John’s feelings. IV. Staff and Peer (Resident) Interaction
Since arriving at Kaplan House, John has been able to build positive peer and staff relationships, and generally presents as friendly. John has gotten into one physical altercation with another peer since arriving and needed significant time to de-escalate, even with staff intervention. Once angry, John has difficulty returning to baseline and requires space to cool off. After returning to baseline, John struggles to take responsibility for his actions. John is offered weekly individual therapy with his social worker to address anger management, substance use, and develop positive coping mechanisms. John attends session less than half of the time and presents as somewhat avoidant of the process, staying out of Kaplan House at time of sessions or refusing to attend. When in session, he is polite and engaged but remains guarded in discussing personal information.
V. Current Functioning
Since arriving at Kaplan House, John has generally displayed good personal and room hygiene and adhered to house rules, with the exception of going AWOC once or being suspected to be smoking of marijuana in the building. John reported that he was AWOC as he needed to go visit a friend in the hospital. In his free time, John enjoys being athletic (he particularly enjoys basketball), playing video games, spending time with his siblings, and hanging out with friends. John likes wearing colorful and unique socks.
John has displayed challenges with his occasional impulse behavior which can be triggered for any reason he gets angry and cannot find a healthy outlet he tends to destroy things or he wants to fight with other residents in the house. He refuses to calm down when this happens and does not care about his personal consequences or continued criminal justice involvement. This behavior becomes even more psyched up when being encouraged by negative peer members. VI. Substance Use/Legal History
John reports engaging in substance use, specifically marijuana, on a weekly basis. It has been noted that he smokes at a higher rate, and occasionally daily when feeling over stressed. He is willing to explore his substance use in individual therapy sessions with his social worker and tends to minimize the role of marijuana in his life.
John has a history of arrests beginning around age 14, and most recently, 3 delinquency cases. John was arrested in July 2018 in Queens, NY for attempted assault. As a result, John was given probation for 12 months. John was arrested on 07/03/18 in Mineola, NY for grand larceny in the fourth. This case was dismissed entirely on 12/07/18, and during the dismissal statement, the judge acknowledged that John had been in the wrong place at the wrong time. John was arrested for robbery in the second degree in Nassau County on 07/25/18. The case was adjourned in contemplation of dismissal after a 6 month period. John attended probation with P.O. Felicia Finch on a weekly basis until its completion in October 2019. John was charged with having a stolen bicycle and assault the case is presently still ongoing.
VII. Vocational/Educational
When John was first placed at Kaplan House, he was enrolled at Manhattan High School on 01/18/19. Due to a safety concern relating to John being told by another student that he would be jumped, John refused to return to the school starting 03/07/19. John was transferred to the Manhattan High School site at the Beacon School. John began attending the Beacon School on 03/15/19. While attending the Beacon School John had a couple of issues regarding dress code and behavior, being late to class, and refusing to do work in one of his classes. John was suspended on 05/15/19 after assaulting a school dean, in retaliation of the Dean’s pushing of John in the hallway. Although John’s behavior was found to be a manifestation of his disability in an MDR appeal hearing, John was ultimately not permitted to return to the Beacon School. Kaplan House then assisted John in transferring to Lower East Side Preparatory High School, which he began to attend on 09/17/19. John received positive feedback from the school in terms of behavior and ongoing improved academic performance. John has also greatly enjoyed joining the school’s basketball team. On 03/04/20 John however received in-house suspension after getting into a physical altercation with a basketball team student from another school. John is not currently working as he is focusing on school, however has expressed interest in having a summer job. Kaplan House will assist John in obtaining a summer job when the time comes. VIII. Current Medications
John is allergic to apples and nuts. John has received an EpiPen for his allergies.
As of 03/04/20, John is diagnosed with the following: attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (F90.9), disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (F34.8), and cannabis use disorder – moderate. II. Summary and Recommendations
John experienced inconsistent parenting and physical abuse throughout his childhood, and his need to feel safe, protected and cared for was unmet. As a result, John did not learn to trust others and mediate his responses to stressors. While John has developed into a young man who feels he can handle things on his own, and has made significant progress in learning to mediate small challenges, his emotional coping skills are limited and leads to acting out and aggressive behavior when most triggered or within a group setting. John however has the ability to process such situations at a later time and learn from experience. It is recommended that John continues individual therapy to address poor anger management, address the trauma and loss he has experienced, and develop positive coping skills. It would benefit John to engage in structured activities to improve his interpersonal skills, build his self-esteem, and reduce acting out behavior.


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